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| August 29, 2016


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cinnamon crunch bagels.

You know that feeling when something comes together perfectly -- that great or small feat, whether you've spent hours and days on it or you knocked it out of the park in one try -- this is that feeling.

It's A Wonderful Life is my all-time favorite film. Rain or shine, Christmas or not. James Stewart is a heartthrob. And now you know a little bit more about me and my weird obsessions.

I've been dying to make bagels, but have been absolutely terrified to make the attempt. If I were to psychoanalyze my actions - or lack thereof (is that a thing?), I'd propose the following theory: I love carbs too much and I'm afraid I'll disappoint myself.

Well that wasn't nearly as deep as it seemed in my head.

But, HOT DOG! I finally did it, and this stuff is ah-mazing.

Did you know that you can have your bagels bread-sliced at Panera? You end up with long, breadstick-shaped slices of your favorite bagel, conducive to guilt-free snacking and overall easier bagel consumption. It's a win-on-win-on-win.

Bagels are essentially the king of carbs. That chewy, yeasty goodness... mmmmm, hello.

Today was another day of everyone's gone, let's bake! I figured that these would be great to have on hand for the next few days... so I'd be less inclined to skip breakfast in the morning.

For those of you who are like me and have never made the attempt to make bagels, I highly suggest visiting this blog to read up on a thorough tutorial of the process, complete with step-by-step photos. It's fantastic.

Back to that hot dog! moment - OH my word. Stop what you are doing right this instant (you're reading this blog, so it can't be that terribly important) and make these. It is so, so worth it. And it's not hard at all to get excellent results.

For starters, we pulled my grandmother's beautiful Sunbeam mixer out of storage so I could graduate from being tied to hand-held mixers. I'm dumb and the thing is complicated, so that went right out the window in a matter of minutes. After pulling the dough off of the hooks and taking matters into my own hands (literally!), I simply kneaded it by hand until the dough seemed smooth enough to pass as workable. Not even a full ten minutes. Yes, guilty confessions. I rarely follow recipes to a T.

I ended up dumping in the full 5 cups of flour, but added in a few splashes of water at the end because the dough was a bit too dry and not combining well. Boiling these puppies was a breeze, and they stayed moist long enough after I'd finished the batch to keep the cinnamon topping from spilling off.

My buyer from Craigslist showed up right at the end of baking my first batch, so I had to take them out just shy of 16 minutes and hope all was well. Thankfully, my couch was a quick sale and 16 minutes was right on the money! Just barely golden and crisp and perfectly chewy and dee-lish.

The cinnamon flavor develops as you chew, basically making you want to savor the bite for forever. I'm happy that I have a small family, because I'll be staking claim on waaaay more than two or three of these bagels.

My, oh my. I am so glad I finally made these.

Cinnamon Crunch Bagels

For the bagels:
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1½ cups warm water (110-120 degrees)
3 tablespoons brown sugar + 1 tablespoon for boiling
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1½ teaspoons salt
5 cups all purpose flour

For the topping:
¼ cup white sugar
¼ cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the yeast, warm water, and 3 tablespoons of brown sugar. Let rest until the yeast is bubbling and foamy - about ten minutes. Stir in the cinnamon, salt, and 2 cups of the flour.

2. Use the dough hook to begin kneading the dough on low speed. Gradually add more flour until the dough just begins to come together. You may not need the full 5 cups of dough or you may need a bit more. Knead for 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic.

3. Transfer dough to a greased large bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a pastry cloth. Let rise for an hour or until doubled.

4. Punch down dough and break off into 12 small balls. Push your thumb through the centers of each ball of dough and form into a bagel shape. Place on a floured surface and let rest for 10 minutes, covered to prevent the bagels from drying out.

5. Fill a large pot with water and stir in the remaining tablespoon of brown sugar. Bring to a boil. Drop the bagels into the water, two at a time, and boil for 45 seconds. Flip each over and continue boiling on the other side for another 45 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel lined plate. Blot to dry and remove to a greased baking sheet 2 inches apart.

6. Combine the topping ingredients and sprinkle evenly over all of the boiled bagels. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through. Cool on a wire rack. Serves 12.

Adapted from: Buns in My Oven


  1. These look fantastic! I love when you can make a Panera favorite at home!

    1. Thank you! If there's a dessert with some kind of streusel or cinnamon crunch topping, I'm all over it. It's great!


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